Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Rifled carotid: Internal carotid artery thrombosis from prolonged carrying of a military rifle
  1. Faiz MH Ahmad1,
  2. S K Nanda1,
  3. S R2 and
  4. D S Grewal3
  1. 1 Department of Neurology, Command Hospital Pune, Pune, Maharashtra, India
  2. 2 Department of Internal Medicine, Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India
  3. 3 Radiodiagnosis and Imaging, Command Hospital (Southern Command), Pune, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr S K Nanda; dr.subrat{at}


Background Traumatic carotid artery thrombosis is uncommon and it usually results from penetrating injuries and less commonly secondary to blunt trauma. It can lead to delayed clinical presentation, which leads to delay in the diagnosis. Soldiers in combat scenario also can present with such an illness, which results from varied modes of injuries. Our case illustrates an unusual cause of carotid thrombosis.

Case presentation Our patient is a 37-year-old soldier who developed neck pain and headache following a 5 km training run with rifle on the shoulder and subsequently developed left upper limb weakness and evaluation revealed extracranial right internal carotid thrombosis. He was managed with anticoagulants and antiplatelets with complete resolution of the thrombosis and complete recovery of the weakness.

Conclusion Blunt trauma to the neck in the form of carrying a rifle for a prolonged duration can result in injury to the carotid vessels leading to delayed neurological presentation. Educating the troops regarding such a mode of illness will prevent such a catastrophic nature of vascular injury resulting in ischaemic stroke.

  • carotid artery thrombosis
  • blunt trauma
  • sports injuries

Statistics from


  • Contributors FMHA and SKN contributed to the diagnosis and management of the case and preparation of the manuscript. SKN is the corresponding author and is responsible for the submission. SR contributed to the management and follow up of the case. DSG was responsible for the radiological diagnosis and follow up of the case.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.